We have recently received a house number. Perhaps a matter of course for many, but for Artigeas it is the first time that house numbers have ever been used. It is undoubtedly more efficient, but for us it is also the loss of a certain charm. When we came to live here, the mayor introduced us to the postwoman, so she would know who the new residents were and where our mail had to be delivered. During holidays or illness, her replacement invariably drove past the houses with a handwritten list and a questioning look! We will certainly miss that.
The advantage is that parcels can now be delivered to the right address, which of course saves a lot of trouble. Since often, one has to enter a complete address for online deliveries, everyone in our hamlet appeared to live at number one! And because Artigeas has seven households, the parcels were often placed haphazardly by the parcel services. Sometimes, we had to search several barns in the area, looking for where our package might have been dropped!
Incidentally, delivery traffic has increased enormously since the pandemic. If before Covid-19, three cars passed, we would know that there was something going on in the village, as usually there would not be that many. Since the pandemic however, more of those fast white vans have been driving around here with their orders.
Another big difference with our old home in the Netherlands is that we live here in a 'zone blanche'. This means that there is little or no telephone signal. Only if we hold the phone to the window in a certain way do we get a signal. When talking to the children and family on the phone, we often talk with our noses to the window. A comical face, haha! Switching to no longer being available 24 hours a day took some getting used to but now we think this is a great charm.
By the way, we do have internet and can therefore call via WhatsApp, but due to the delay that sometimes occurs, we have to end sentences by saying 'Over', so that the other person knows when he or she can speak. This works well but not with every generation. For example, the mothers found this complicated with the result that many conversations ended in a Babylonian confusion of tongues, the content lost in phrases such as 'Can I talk already?' or 'Hello, are you still there?' To avoid frustration and family feuds, we only call these lovely people via a direct line!
Over and out.